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358                 HISTORY OF PERSIA                 CHAP.
they were forestalled. They fought desperately, and at
one time it looked as if the Persian army, which was
suffering from thirst, would be defeated, but Nadir
rallied his troops and won the day. After this battle the
army moved with precaution in four divisions, disposed
to form advance, rear, and flanking guards, while the
precious grain boats were protected by the artillery,
escorted by a force of cavalry. The celebrated fortress
of Hezar Asp was first besieged, but hearing that Ilbars
Khan, the ruler of Khiva, was in the fort of Jayuk, Nadir
relinquished the siege and surrounded the Khan, whom he
forced to surrender. Before this campaign Nadir Shah
had despatched ambassadors to the Khan of Khiva to
demand the release of all Persians detained in slavery,
but his envoys had been put to death except one, who
was sent back in a mutilated condition. Ilbars Khan now
had to pay the penalty for this act of savagery, and was
put to death with twenty of his advisers. The people
were not given over as a prey to the army, as it was
realized that they were innocent.
Among the prisoners who were taken by Nadir on
this campaign were two English members of Hanway's
staff, Messrs. Thompson and Hogg, who were treated with
much kindness, being given passports and promised redress
in case of losses. Their travels and adventures, which
certainly entitle them to a modest niche in the temple of
fame, are given by Hanway. From a commercial point
of view the enterprise was a failure, as there was little
demand for their goods, and no profit was made com-
mensurate with the great risks which were run.
A number of Persians and Russians, too, were freed
from slavery. The former were settled in a village
named Mauludgah, in the district of Darragaz, which Nadir
gave orders to found in commemoration of the fact that
it was his birthplace, as the word implies. From Abdul
Kurreem we learn that the mosque he erected was sur-
mounted by "three golden vases one upon another, and
at the top of all is fixed a scimitar of the same metal,
implying that the sword issued from hence/' When I
visited the ruins in 1913 I was informed that the founder